Giving new life and a sense of revival to the same old staples lead us to Sarasota-Bradenton’s keenest innovations for 2018. We’re fairly certain you’ve seen cauliflower and a pair of sneakers before, but you haven’t seen them quite like this. Explore the creatively cultivated trends that have run the gamut this year in terms of fresh takes and new impressions. Consider sporting the color yellow for once, scoop into the DIY crazes and recalibrate your compass to sail the seven seas (or at least Sarasota Bay). Find the truth behind third-wave coffee, why male collagen masks are all the rage, what to expect with a dozen roundabouts hitting the streets and the sudden uptick of public art and coastal condos in newly hip neighborhoods. Snag local, health-forward snack alternatives to potato chips and hop on the bandwagon to Cuba and join the strawless movement against pesky plastic. We have a sneaking suspicion you’ll enjoy the troves of Korean cuisine and upcoming artisanal markets discovered on our scavenger hunt to bring you the latest and greatest trends. 

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And It Was All Yellow

Pantone called it the color Spring, and Cosmo dubbed “Gen-Z Yellow the new Millennial Pink.” Whether a rich golden mustard or a delicate pastel yellow, referred to as Meadowlark, the lively hue reminiscent of the brilliant sun has been a hot color this season–pun intended. As fashion has evolved over the years, it is no secret that the industry has gotten significantly bolder and more adventurous, opting for these bold primary colors in order to make a statement. Yellow has made its way into footwear, handbags, dresses, swimsuits, sunglasses, nails and more. —J.Glover  Previous page: Blouse and clutch, Marmalade Salon & Boutique, 1927 South Osprey Ave., Sarasota. Messenger crossbody bag, T.Georgiano’s, 1409-B 1st St, Sarasota. Earrings, necklace and bracelets, Apricot Lane Boutique, 464 John Ringling Blvd., Sarasota. Electra Townie bicycle, POPcycles Bike Shop, 5130 Clark Rd., Sarasota.


Wall to Wall

Gone may be the days of wall-to-wall galleries on Palm Avenue, and the recent closings of Hodgell Gallery and Art of Ireland Gallery may leave some questioning the future of Sarasota as a gallery town. But as some doors shutter, others open wide, and the region is actually enjoying a bit of a resurgence in gallery operations. Just a couple years ago, the Rosemary did its part, with independent artists like Grace Howl and Wayne Eastep opening up their own spaces on Central Avenue and still going strong today. And this past year, Art Ovation Hotel joined Allyn Gallup Contemporary, Dabbert Gallery and, another recent addition, the Meg Krakowiak Gallery on Palm Avenue. Nearly as much a cultural center as it is a hotel, the Art Ovation hosts regular exhibitions in its lobby, which anyone can stroll in and admire, as well as hosting regular artists-in-residence, creating something of a studio/gallery experience for any passersby. Last but not least, Main Street has its own revival going on next door, where not only has the established Stakenborg Gallery received new life with a new owner and a new name—the Stakenborg/Greenburg Art Gallery—but an entirely new gallery has set up shop. Called Artists on Main, the gallery opened in March and already boasts 40 member artists from the region, including fan favorites like sculptor Jack Dowd and local award-winners like watercolorist Judy Saltzman. Fluke, folly or the way of the future? Are the galleries here to stay? Artists on Main owner Judy Ellis says yes. “It’s been phenomenal,” she says, and the gallery has been shipping work nearly every day. She opened a similar gallery in Lakewood Ranch last August, after she couldn’t find a spot on Main Street in Sarasota. This year, she jumped on the vacancy and doesn’t plan on looking back. “We know the locals love it,” she says. “It’s still an arts city.” P.Lederer


The Sneaker is Now

With Kanye West’s ongoing Yeezy partnership with Adidas and Rihanna’s Fenty collaboration with Puma in 2016, the sneaker world has been inundated with sleek, futuristic styles that carry an aloof coolness. Minimalist yet eccentric, the shoes sport mesh fabric, neon colors, metallic accents, Velcro straps and chunky foam soles, reminiscent of the 90s. If you’re looking to bring this modern style to your wardrobe, find the perfect fit with Fleet Feet’s six-step personal fit process, check out New Balance Sarasota’s location on Stickney Point for the newly-released Beacon sneaks and Zantes or head over to Fit 2 Run on Main Street. Monte Morrison, footwear specialist at Fit2Run, recalls customers searching for models of this ultra-cool, lightweight and reflective latest steezy look. “It turns heads,” he says. At this ‘runner’s superstore’ look for ON, a Swiss-based company with futuristic styles for both men and women. Weighing in at about 8.6 ounces, these athletic, casual sneaks are flying off the shelves. Just from last year, ON sales are “through the roof,” says Morrison, and with a new model arriving next month, the trend is sure to continue. —C. Manz  Fleet Feet Sports Sarasota, 711 S Osprey Ave. #1, Sarasota. New Balance Sarasota, 1872 Stickney Point Rd., Sarasota. Fit 2 Run, 1400 Main St., Sarasota.

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Caul Me Maybe

That veggie has the nerve to show up to the party wearing the same dress, but in a different color. Who wore it better? Well the green stepsister broccoli looks to be out the picture for the time being, and the white cabbage flower is most definitely blooming and booming. Subtly tasty and coated with gut-friendly benefits, cauliflower is just dying to be the center of attention, so let’s give it to her...she does seem to know what she’s doing. At Bravo Coastal Kitchen, cut into a heaping plate of Buffalo Cauliflower Steak, which dubiously looks like a meaty cut of beef, the plant filet covered in gorgonzola, creamy horseradish, green onion and hot sauce. Mix things up and substitute your chicken wings and chicken tacos for baked Cauliflower “Wings” at Veg and Masa-dusted Cauliflower Tacos, garnished with cilantro chimichurri, queso fresco and lime at Screaming Goat Taqueria. The trendsetter is even replacing fried rice in Asian cuisine at Taste of Asia, where the cauliflower is ground so coarsely and fried with onions that it actually resembles rice—making it a yummy and healthy option when craving some soy. At Shore, you can’t ask for much more—Spiced Whole Roasted Cauliflower with goat cheese, shishito puree and zante currants, in a hazelnut pesto. And think she hasn’t gotten into your pizza yet? Wrong. Dough of bread and yeast is taking the backseat for a low-carb, crispier alternative. At Sal’s Pizzeria & Pasta House, build your za atop a housemade Cauliflower Crust (gluten free, paleo and keto friendly). Make way for the new girl in town! —B. Mattie  Bravo Coastal Kitchen, 3501 South Tamiami Trl #1175, Sarasota. Veg, 2164 Gulf Gate Dr., Sarasota. Screaming Goat Taqueria, 6606 Superior Ave., Sarasota. Shore, 465 John Ringling Blvd, #200, Sarasota. Sal’s Pizzeria, 6582 Gateway Ave., Sarasota.

Ballpark Blitz

Better stock up on Crackerjacks. The 2019 spring training season will feature the highest concentration of Major League Baseball teams at bat on the Gulf Coast in years. “We are hoping that having two teams in Sarasota County will lengthen the stay of those visitors who are touring the Grapefruit League,” says Shelby Connett, Visit Sarasota County’s director of sports marketing. The Atlanta Braves have a stadium under construction now, and will play their final game of the 2019 spring training season in North Port, then move all Florida operations here. But the team’s already trying to become part of the local scene, and John Dunn, Braves vice president of Florida operations, held a community event in June where North Port attendees got the first chance to buy season tickets for spring training. Sports officials hope the fact so many teams play here now means this region becomes headquarters to baseball superfans. Here’s how the Grapefruit League line-up looks along the Gulf Coast. —J.Ogles


All About Empanadas

One does not simply eat just one empanada. There’s a reason we’re
given two hands—to hold twice as many baked pastry treats. Luckily for Latin-loving foodies, there’s a growing appreciation for the calzone’s mini foreign cousin. And with that burgeoning appeal, comes more innovative and ingenious flavors to excite a broader bandwidth of taste buds. Saturday Farmers Market favorite Empanadas By Stef never disappoints with her father’s Argentinian dough recipe and integration of fresh, local ingredients. Stef can’t make hers fast enough, with popular classics like traditional spicy chicken, beef, lamb, roasted butternut squash, margherita, humita and spinach disappearing down the ravenous gullets of hungry hordes. However, more off-the-cuff varieties integrating culinary fusions like meatball, egg and bacon breakfast, and sweetened dessert empanadas like apple pie, or guava and cheese, become an experiment in “What all can we throw in this delightful puffed pastry and bake to perfection?” When you’re ready to go full empatarian, make these authentic South American and Cuban stables apart of your daily diet at Argentinian Pastry, Rincon Cubano, Drago’s, Inkawasi Peruvian Restaurant, Mi Sitio Colombian Restaurant, Mojos Cuban or Mariscos Azteca. Think Empacurious is no longer? Owner Alfonso Abreu will brighten your day—the once artisanal street food restaurant is now a full-service culinary institute of delivering gourmet fresh-packaged empanadas and meal kits right to your door, and also available for catering events. Rotations of bison, pork, rabbit, turkey, duck, crab, lobster, roasted root vegetables, legumes, farro and quinoa are now at your fingertips (literally) —B. Mattie

Curious for Cuba

It remains a simple fact of the human condition that banning a thing will only make the desire for that thing all the greater. Enter the Americans’ endless fascination with the island nation hovering so close but just out of reach off the coast of Florida: Cuba. A mere hour’s flight away, political chicanery has long stymied attempts at free cultural exchange on any national scale, but the people have begun taking matters into their own hands, and local organizations are taking the lead in reintroducing the Pearl of the Antilles to the Gulf Coast traveler’s checklist. The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Ringling College of Art and Design organizes at least one trip to Cuba a year, offering 15 spots for those looking to take a five-day excursion through Cuban arts and culture, complete with a guide and extensive itinerary. They usually sell out within a few days. People are simply curious, says Janna Overstreet, director of the institute, hearing stories of political revolution and refugees and iconic leaders, but never seeing for themselves. “This trip makes it real,” she says. “It is always more enlightening to have the reality than the imagined.” And students have opportunities to speak with Cuban professors about art and history, as well as learn from whomever they may meet on the street or at the bar. And just this past June, the Asolo Repertory Theatre’s annual trip brought select staff and 65 guests on a 10-day cruise that included four days in Cuba—two in Havana and two in Santiago de Cuba—complete with art tours, mountain hikes and Tropicana cabaret and dancing. “With the lifting of travel restrictions, we saw a unique opportunity to offer a culturally enriching trip for our patrons,” says Asolo Rep Producing Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards, noting that the theater had also just completed its American Character Project and shifted focus to a new theme: Staging Our World. “What better country to explore than Cuba,” he asks, “whose people have deeply contributed to Florida’s and America’s cultural fabric?” —P.Lederer

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Leave a Trail

Don’t care for cashews but love everything else in the mix? That’s the price you pay with premade trail mixes. Thankfully, you’re no longer chained to picking out those pesky cranberries that you were forced into getting with bulk-made packages. Natural food grocers like Earth Origins, Whole Foods, Earth Fare and Lucky’s Market revamp the old school candy shop concept of bagging your own goodies by scaled poundage. Create your ideal concoction for on-the-go snacking at Lucky’s elaborate DIY Trail Mix station, where unconventional and gourmet options fill a mini city of containers for your scooptastic pleasure. For $6.99/lb., harvest a bag of milk chocolate Sunbursts, all-natural Rainbow Drops, dark chocolate espresso beans, Greek yogurt-covered golden raisins, vanilla chai- or cocoa-dusted almonds, cinnamon bears, crushed wafer cookies, goji berries, chocolate-covered ginger, roasted or raw pepitas, Hot Hot Hot snack mix, wasabi peas, dried pineapple and mango bits, Cajun sesame sticks, plus Lucky’s own soft-baked granola creations—Apple Pie, Cherry Cobbler, Banana Nut Bread and Peanut Butter & Jelly. Never go back to a plain ol’ bag of peanuts and raisins with a few chocolate chips thrown in for good
measure. Grab a baggie and blaze your own trail!  B. Mattie


Hospital Boom

A medical turf war playing out in Venice for years finally cooled down, and the company will soon have two new hospitals to show for it. The state Agency for Health Care Administration in July authorized fresh facilities to rise and serve south Sarasota County. One will be a total rebuild of Venice Regional Bayfront Health, on East Venice Avenue. The other will be a new campus for Sarasota Memorial Hospital, located just off the Laurel Road exit for Interstate-75.

Bob Hite, Venice Regional’s marketing director, says the reconstruction of the 312-bed hospital has been in the works for years. The old facility just had too many problems to keep up with. “We’ve put $30 million into it but we need a replacement,” he says. The state approval doesn’t bring new beds to Venice Regional but allows state-of-the-art facilities there. As for SMH, the expansion brings to life a long-envisioned expansion to the south. “The new facility will bring our extensive physician base further south, which
will support our efforts to establish a future hospital in North Port as well,” says CEO David Verinder.

But it’s not a move competing hospitals have embraced. Private hospitals, including Venice Regional, challenged SMH’s expansion, saying the public hospital was unfairly horning into areas served by other entities. SMH officials in kind have said they have a mandate to provide for all of Sarasota County; Verinder notes taxpayers in North Port and Venice contribute to the hospital district and deserve an SMH facility nearby. But as state officials back further away from strict certificate of need requiring limiting hospitals, both health providers got the go-ahead to serve Venice. —J. Ogles


Get Real

Has the Age of Abstraction come to an end? Perhaps not, but painterly realism and representational art is definitely experiencing a renaissance in the area, as more and more artists from all walks of life turn to the tried and true methods and classical traditions of realist painting for their arts education. “Every 100 years it happens,” says Charles Miano, founder and artistic director of the Southern Atelier art school. “It’s just a part of the pendulum swinging.” And as the head of the only atelier in the region, Miano sees the impact. Founded 10 years ago, Southern Atelier draws from the 19th century French academic approach to arts instruction, for something more akin to an apprenticeship program from the time of the Old Masters than experiments in abstraction and self-discovery. Working from an established curriculum of exercises, students emphasize technique and proven methods for mastering line, form and color, tackling these fundamentals in the old way, as they learn the principles of rhythm, gesture and narrative that will elevate a rote likeness to a work of art. And lately class sizes have been growing, with everyone from retirees to Ringling College graduates signing up to try their hand. Some students travel from as far as Ocala and Orlando, says Miano, with more and more moving to the area from as far as Europe for the full four-year apprenticeship. “It’s a rigorous apprenticeship, but it’s just incredible when people apply themselves and practice,” says Miano. “It’s really amazing to see.” And the rise of representational art goes beyond Southern Atelier, according to James Martin, a professor of illustration at Ringling College whose own art leans toward the representational. “When art loses all semblance of representational form, it leaves me a little cold,” he says. Martin also sees the shift as a response to Modernism, and a tendency from the fine art world at large to undervalue contemporary figurative work in favor of non-objective work, but warns against being overly reactionary and abandoning the abstract in favor of photorealism. “I like to see the artist’s hand apparent in a work of art,” he says. “There is a place at the table for both schools of thought.”  P.Lederer


Barber and Ken

The helical striped pole revolving outside may be a nostalgic sign of the times—inviting you inside to a fine tooth comb, a pair of scissors and cracked leather seats. But barber shops have really stepped up their game in recent years due to men showing higher interests in keeping their mugs and beards trendily groomed, and their appearance well-kept. For a mega-clean shave and hipster haircut, Just Gents Barber & Spa caters to all your mirror-reflected accolades. Much more than a typical barbershop—with upscale masculine décor and specialized services—Just Gents caters specifically to the needs of today’s professional gent. Gentlemen are on the lookout for a testosterone-oriented environment they feel comfortable in and also comfortable exploring new services. “Looking good and feeling good isn’t reserved for just women anymore,” says owner Theres Beutelschmidt. Just Gents pampers its customers each month with specials to encourage guys to try something new they otherwise wouldn’t, like a haircut paired with a collagen facemask. “We like to think outside the box each month and offer services they don’t know they’re missing out on and might feel ‘weird’ getting anywhere else,” Beutelschmidt teases. “Women’s salons aren’t cutting it (no pun intended) anymore. Men are returning to the old school way of doing things—beard trims, straight razor shaves and a little pampering that they wouldn’t necessarily find at a woman’s salon. Back in the day when barbershops first gained popularity, most men would go weekly for straight razor shaves and bi-weekly for haircuts. It used to be a social place and staying groomed was very important, especially for businessmen back then. Slowly but surely, men are following in those footsteps again.” For the boys ready to play in the big leagues, stop in for an ultimate day of grooming including gray-blending/coloring, therapeutic massages, sugar/salt scrubs, mud wraps, hair removal waxing, hand and foot detailing, facials and shoe shining for the busy executives. Dudes can enjoy these services also at The Barber Classic Cuts & Shaves, where these professionals specialize in styling the modern man and the interior boasts a sleek, sophisticated man-cave vibe. From precision haircuts, fades, eyebrow-shaping and goatee shape-ups, to hot lather head and traditional straight razor shaves, you can knock the metro-hipster lifestyle, but guarantee those guys walk out these shops with an extra pep in their step and beguiled side-glances from the female passersby. —B.Mattie   Just Gents, 126 North Orange Ave., Sarasota. The Barber Classic Cuts & Shaves, 430 Central Ave., Sarasota.


Synchronicity on Stage

From the days of Jezebel and Gone With the Wind all the way to modern day classics like Armageddon and Deep Impact, Antz and A Bug’s Life, Tombstone and Wyatt Earp, Hollywood is no stranger to the “twin films” phenomenon, seeing competing studios release suspiciously similar films at the same time, each striving to be the Babe to the other’s Gordy. This season sees a similar drama play out across Sarasota, Bradenton and Venice stages, as artistic directors around the area seem to be operating on the same bandwidth. Two different productions of the critically acclaimed The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time are coming to Sarasota—one live and opening in January at Florida Studio Theatre, and the other a broadcast of the National Theatre in London’s Tony Award-winning production, presented as part of the Ringling Museum’s National Theatre Live program. And for those who prefer their drama with a touch of “barber-ism,” Sarasota Opera kicks off the season with an October production of The Barber of Seville, while Asolo Repertory Theatre serves up a bloody good time with a production of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street in May. Audiences also get a couple doses of musical medicine from Dr. Zhivago this season, as both Artist Series Concerts and the Sarasota Orchestra programmed a couple selections from the film’s score, the former in a February concert dedicated to Russian folk music and dance and the latter in an April Pops performance of “Hollywood Hits.” But it’s The Players Centre for Performing Arts and the Asolo Theatre that win matching BFF playbills this year, with both theaters not only separately programming their own Arthur Miller productions (The Crucible at the Asolo in January and A View from the Bridge at The Players in April) but also, in more of a coincidence than makes the conspiratorially inclined comfortable, their own contemporary twist on a Russian classic—Players brings Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike to the stage in October and Asolo brings
A Doll’s House, Part 2 to the stage in January. —P.Lederer


Roundabout Rundown

Rod Warner would be proud. Years after the late roundabout enthusiast called for Sarasota’s gridlock intersections to be replaced with these flowing traffic elements, the city has a half dozen sending cars in circles. Coming years will bring more along U.S. 41 as well. Why the shift? David Hutchinson, executive director of the Sarasota-Manatee Metropolitan Planning Organization, explains roundabouts get the same number of cars through an intersection each day, but slow traffic to about 20 miles an hour so pedestrians and cyclists can share the asphalt and not fear for their lives. Here’s where you can see that change in effect.—  J.Ogles


Five Points Roundabout
Ringling and Palm
Ringling and Pineapple
Ringling and Orange
Palm and Cocoanut
Main and Orange

Under Construction

14th and 41 – Projected early 2020 
10th and 41 – Projected early 2020
Fruitville and 41 – Study complete, construction starting Fall 2018
Gulfstream and 41 – Study complete, construction starting Summer 2020


Myrtle and 41: Study to conclude in early 2019, Design to start in 2021 MLK and 41 : Study to conclude in early 2019, Design to start in 2021 Main and 41:  No date set yet for study, awaiting funding Ringling and 41:  No date set yet for study, awaiting funding.


Going Public

Looking to show its best face to the world, the City of Sarasota has been putting public art at the forefront, resulting in sculptures and murals popping up all around town and reminding folks that, in Sarasota at least, they don’t need to go to a museum to see some good art. (Though they certainly can.) This past year saw the installation of Ba’al and Yizhaq at Sabal Palm Bank on Ringling Boulevard—a major work from the late Israeli sculptor Boaz Vaadia, and a novel public-private partnership for public art in Sarasota that could pave the way for more high-priced art to be placed in public view. A bit farther down Ringling Boulevard, as the ongoing city roundabout project promises more and more public art to come, a new sculpture from a local artist, Jorge Blanco, recently took up residence at the roundabout at Orange Avenue, where it will weather the elements to help travelers weather their commute. And, to folks like Blanco, that’s more important than space in a collector’s house. “Art should be in public spaces so everyone can enjoy it,” says Blanco, and can inject energy and character to any city looking to grow and attract tourism. “Imagine Paris without the Eiffel Tower,” he says. And as new buildings go up, those walls become canvases for some. Compound Boardshop and The Yoga Shack already finished a commissioned murals outside their locations, and BOLD on Fruitville has released plans for a pair of large-scale murals of the statue of David and Nike, the Greek goddess of victory. For those looking to get more involved, keep tabs on the Public Art Commission to see what projects are coming down the tube, dude. —P.Lederer


Curry Calling

Find the snap-to-the-mouth zing and deep flavors of India and Asia as varied curries grace the menus in Sarasota more than ever before. With a growing Thai presence in our region, you can snag curry in a hurry without having to migrate far for an authentic bowl of soulful coconut milk, turmeric, cumin, ginger and chilies. Captains of curry cravings around town include Thai Wasabi, Isan Thai Restaurant, Spice Station, Star Thai, Baiyoke Thai Bistro, Thai Palace and Siam Thai Bistro. At Drunken Poet, choose from vegetable, chicken, pork, beef, duck, scallop, shrimp or squid, and then add white jasmine rice, brown rice or a riceberry black jasmine rice. Traffic light colors become your options of flavored coconut chili sauce: the green curry of Kang Kiew Wan means go—made with basil leaves, bamboo shoots and Thai eggplant. Yellow means whoa fella, slow down and take a breather with the Kang Gari—made with sautéed potatoes and carrots in a yellow chili curry. Red means stop, drop and roll for the hotness of Kang Panang—prepared with a special chili paste of red curry, peanut and Kaffir lime leaf. Even still, if you’re feigning for a traditional Indian curry, The Curry Station offers expansive buffets of homemade recipes as well as cooking classes to the public—with interactive demonstrations held frequently on Sundays to teach you the makings of the dish for comfortably lapping up with curry on the couch at home. —B. Mattie   Thai Wasabi, 5250 E. State Rd. 64, Bradenton; Isan Thai, 5758 South Tamiami Trail, Sarasota; Spice Station, 1438 Boulevard of the Arts, Sarasota; Star Thai, 935 North Beneva Rd., Sarasota; Baiyoke Thai Bistro, 1829 South Tamiami Trail, Venice; Thai Palace, 4756 Cortez Rd. West, Bradenton; Siam Thai Bistro, 5763 Manatee Ave. West, Bradenton; Drunken Poet Cafe, 1572 Main St., Sarasota, Curry Station Indian Cuisine & Catering, 3550 Clark Rd., Sarasota.


Korean Machine

With the arrival of K-Nam Style this past March, the Korean scene in Sarasota continues to grow. The Mexican-Korean fusion food truck, K-Nam Style (a play on the K-pop hit “Gangnam Style”), often found on Fruitville Road or up in Stickney Point, serves up signature dishes like the Bulgogi quesadilla and the kimchi fried rice burrito. Soung-ja Nam, along with her co-owner/husband, believed customers would be more willing to try Korean food if it was mixed with something familiar—hence the Mexican twist—although Nam notes she gets “quite a few people” who know what kimchi is. The presence of Korean cuisine in Sarasota is “definitely growing,” says Nam. “As people try it more there’s going to be more of a demand for it,” she says. “People like to try new things and everybody’s all about what’s new and what’s trendy.” If you’re still hungry after K-Nam Style, there’s plenty more to visit. Korean Ssam Bar, opened March of 2017 and now available on the meal delivery app GrubHub, offering a classic and satisfying Bibimbap Rice Bowl, while the seafood pancake at Shilla, a veteran of Sarasota’s Korean scene, remains a foodie’s favorite. Porky’s Fusion BBQ, opened this past February, serves classic Korean barbecue at an affordable price. And family-run food truck BulGoGi Sarasota brings you its newly opened brick-and-mortar shop Charlie’s BulGoGi, with authentic recipes for dishes such as Gal-Bi (short rip) and the Bing Su dessert —C.Manz  K-Nam Style: 7410 Fruitville Rd., Sarasota. Korean Ssam Bar: 1303 North Washington Blvd., Sarasota. Shilla Korean Restaurant: 501 North Beneva Rd. #240, Sarasota. Porky’s Fusion BBQ Asian Fusion Restaurant: 2801 North Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. BulGoGi Sarasota: 2791 Bee Ridge Rd. Sarasota/Charlie’s BulGoGi: 4567 Bee Ridge Rd., Sarasota.


“Collegetown” Eats

Sarasota is home to an abundance of upscale, highbrow cuisine, proudly (and deservedly) upholding its well-to-do reputation. But instituting a fresh vision and Millenial demographic in town, are more appropriately deemed “collegetown” dining establishments. Blatantly hip and current, newly established additions are hitting the streets—bringing a vibrant, youthful charm to the creative coast.  J.Glover

Maple Street Biscuit Company

A country classic started in the northern neighborhood of Jacksonville will be adding some southern charm to University Parkway come fall. The happening joint, especially a hit in college towns like Tallahassee and Gainesville, houses different variations of flaky biscuits, dressed with varied tasty toppings from maple syrup and pecan wood smoked bacon to fried chicken and goat cheese, and provides some good ol’ comfort food for the perfect breakfast or lunch. 

Mellow Mushroom

Originally from Atlanta, GA, this pizza and spirits college staple is bringing chill, funky, colorful vibes to the Trail. From craft beer, salads, hoagies, creative stone-baked pizza and calzones, Mellow Mushroom crossbreeds Italian cuisine with
psychedelic hippie flavor.

Shake Shack

The universal burger joint everyone looks for in the big city has finally made its way to the Q. Shake up your go-to burger and shake spot with the Shack, from burgers, chicken and hotdogs, to french fries, frozen custard and milkshakes. 

Clean Juice

The clean-eating frenzy has taken the world by storm—including Sarasota. Clean Juice at the UTC offers a super clean and modern Instagram worthy aesthetic, with a wide variety of fresh concoctions of organic fruit and wholesome ingredients in the form of acai bowls, smoothies, pressed juices and more. 

Gulf Gate Food+Beer

A sporty and playful addition to the Gulf Gate strip of restaurants, bars and lounges, Gulf Gate Food + Beer will provide fun bar food, bowls, salads, craft beer, wine, sake cocktails and more. Drop by to watch a sports game at a hi-top, or sit back and catch up with good company.


Got Silk?

As the fixation on healthy, vegan lifestyles
intensifies; in addition to a rise in discoveries of lactose intolerance and passionately anti-dairy individuals, dairy substitutes have become so commonplace that it is a rarity when one actually takes his or her beverages with whole milk, or even skim. Not only are non-dairy milks created from oats, hemp, peas, soy beans, coconut and nuts like almonds, cashews and macadamias,
free of added hormones and GMOs, but the manufacturing process is significantly more humane and environmentally friendly. Non-dairy milk substitutes are rich in protein, folic acid, Vitamin B, fiber, iron, Vitamin E and more. Cashew and soy milk are now the key ingredients for vegan cheese.  J.Glover

Kawha  Coconut, soy and almond.

Green Bowl  Coconut, almond.

Buddy Brew  Soy, almond.

Green Zebra  Coconut, almond.

Lelu  Coconut, almond.

Pastry Art  Almond, soy.

Clever Cup  Coconut, soy and almond.


Fly Non-Stop

Imagine clocking out of work Friday and driving straight to the airport to hop on a plane— and soaring 1,200 miles away in a matter of hours. With Labor Day around the bend, take advantage of that extra vacay day for a retreat—fly straight to JFK and settle into the bougie Hamptons by sundown or escape to DFW for a fleeting rendezvous with a cowboy/girl in the Lone Star State. Travel opportunities have recently broadened and become more affordable than ever before. The hassle of venturing up to Tampa International Airport is becoming increasingly alleviated with added destinations and fairer flight prices right in SRQ’s backyard—just in time to book that swift weekend getaway. Direct flights to New York, Dallas, Toronto, Chicago, Charlotte, Indianapolis, Detroit, Pittsburg, Atlanta, Boston and Portland are all available for your wanderlust pleasures, with added airlines like JetBlue, Delta, Elite Airways, Allegiant and Air Canada. And come December, Frontier Airlines will make its sky-high debut at SRQ with direct flights to Cleveland. Mark your company’s iCal, pack a duffle and book that ride to 6000 Airport Circle. —B. Mattie


Micro Markets

Local Sarasotans can all attest to their long-standing, loving relationship with the Saturday Farmers Market, but with the demand for more community-based shopping scenes to enjoy the sunshine, stroll with our pets, enjoy live entertainment/people-watching and support local goods/businesses, we’re pleased to welcome mini, artisan markets that come and go with the seasons—even if around for only a fleeting time, they serve a meaningful purpose to the community! Pop-up markets like Rosemary Indie Market (third Saturday of the month, Nov-May), Sunset Market (hosted by CitySide every Thursday, Feb-April), Shabby Chic Vintage Market in downtown Bradenton (held twice a year, Spring and Fall), 73 Degree Flea Market (hosted monthly at rotating local breweries during Spring and Summer), the Phillippi Farmhouse Market (every Wednesday, Oct-April) and a newly added Siesta Key Night Market at Westfield (every 2nd and 4th Friday, Oct-Dec) all attracting various artists, craftspeople, designers, farmers and food vendors we don’t always get to see at the Sarasota Farmers Market. Variety is the spice of life they say, and we venture to agree that, although we may not have the changing of the seasons to look forward to here in Florida, we can certainly look forward to the announcement of these new, hip markets coming back to town. Lead Coordinator for Simply Events Mars Benson shares, “Shabby Chic Vintage Market and Artisan Day events are growing fast and have become one of the most unique shopping events in Tampa Bay. Each location is different and brings its own unique crowd of attendees and captures the fun of styling for each season!”  B.Mattie


Pampered at the Picture Show

Nothing beats a blockbuster on the big screen, but sometimes the theater experience leaves a bit to be desired. And between sticky floors, noisy neighbors and overpriced popcorn, that ratty seat squeaking on its hinges and smelling like a moldy walrus, where you’re supposed to sit cramped for two hours in your Friday night finest, holding your breath to avoid catching Ebola from the upholstery, can be the final insult. No more, as the gods of Sarasota cinema have heard the pleas of their devotees and  bestowed their blessings upon the town in the form of plush leather recliners, arranged in neat little rows before the silver screen, complete with plenty of personal space and all the little doodads one could need for that boring chunk in the middle of every Marvel movie. Cinebistro may have led the way back in 2016, but the Regal Hollywood 20 soon followed suit, transforming into the Regal Hollywood 11, featuring fewer screens and fewer seats, but each the lap of luxury. As is, the question between the two becomes one of priorities. CineBistro demands the higher ticket price, but offers full restaurant service at your seat and boots the children after 6pm, becoming a 21 and over venue and all the better for it. Regal may not be serving up steaks, and it may still be the local weekend hotspot for teens and fiends, but the prices won’t break the family budget.   P.Lederer

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Get Crafty Wit It

Avid DIYers can look forward to the new Sarasota
Art & Handmade Home Show
, a three-day event this fall. The event will attract international preeminent collectors, art enthusiasts, interior decorators, designers and discerning homeowners, and feature exceptional works in ceramics, decorative fiber, furniture, glass, jewelry, wearable art, photography, sculpture, mixed-media including paper, leather, metal, wood, paints and more from all over the world. If you can’t wait till then to get your craft on, head to The Craft Bar in Burns Court, whose cheeky mantra states it’ll be, “the most fun you have with your clothes on!” Behold an entertaining DIY crafting experience with friends—sipping your favorite beverage, meeting other like-minded pals and learning to create something original to take home with you. The Craft Bar incorporates instructional classes and locally sourced items for the latest trends in artsy gifts and home décor, like hand-powdered soap, custom-scented candles, pottery and paintings. And opening this past March and led by husband-and-wife team Jimmy and Angela Adams, Sarasota’s own Create U DIY Workshop hosts workshops where attendees can tackle their own personal projects—and as long as they send plans beforehand, the Adams will have all the materials and instruction needed to make their dream project a reality. BYOB and also available for private events, Create U may have to add a graduate program soon. Gettin’ jiggy with crafts at home too is becoming more of a favorable pastime alongside Netflixing and gardening. So when someone asks where you got that cool, upcycled car key rack hanging in your foyer, you say coyly, “Oh that? I made it myself.”  B.Mattie   The Craft Bar, 529 South Pineapple Ave., Sarasota. Sarasota Art and Handmade Show this November 30 and December 1-2, 2018. Create U DIY Workshop, 5045 Fruitville Rd. Unit 135, Sarasota.


Room Boom

After years of hungering for more hotels downtown, Sarasota has seen a sudden surge in rooms with the arrival of boutique establishments like Art Ovation and major brands like the Westin, Embassy Suites and Aloft. And that’s not to mention a new Hampton Inn near Interstate-75, Zota on Longboat Key or the Carlisle Inn in the Pinecraft neighborhood. The big picture, according to Visit Sarasota County President Virginia Haley, will be a boost in tourist development tax dollars. She says the region has set a goal of $30 million in collected bed tax revenue in the next few years, which would be quite the jump considering Sarasota County only broke the $10-million mark in 2008. But it’s possible. In the last few years, revenues have been jumping by close to 7 percent a year. The county collected $21.3 million in fiscal year 2017, and there’s been growth this year. More than 1,000 new hotel rooms have come online already in the city of Sarasota since 2015, most of those high-end locales charging hefty tax for every key, and that’s all before The Sarasota Modern opens in the Rosemary District. But tourism officials love it, and have plenty of ways to spend the money, from arts grants to sports stadiums. The county has already committed $21.2 million to the new Atlanta Braves stadium in North Port over 30 years. And as Sarasota moves forward with a major redevelopment of the Bayfront, plans include a new performing arts venue overlooking Sarasota Bay, and bed tax revenue will likely help operate that facility, Haley says. —J. Ogles

Animation Notes

So your kid wants to study digital animation but you worry Dreamworks and Disney can’t possibly employ every Ringling College graduate. No worries. Fields from education to home construction covet digital artists for work beyond cartoons and video games. “Digital artists are building three-dimensional models and environments and bringing them to life in a rich way that people would never be able to experience in reality,” says Sharecare Executive Producer Jessica Mazzer. Here are a few employers
just in this market looking for 3D wizards   J.Ogles


Short for Information Visualization and Innovative Research, this Sarasota company takes digital modeling and rendering software to create everything from combat simulators for the US military to surgical software that lets med students learn their craft without touching a cadaver.


This virtual reality studio was launched by principals with Hoyt Architects, but works with companies around the U.S. creating immersive environments for developments still in planning stages. The group helped agents at BLVD show high-rise condo views before the building rose.


The Virtual Reality lab for Dr. Oz’s company started as a local business creating digital apps patients could load into their tablets, then could use to explore renderings of their own internal organs. Founder Jeff Hazelton tapped artists from Ringling to make the art look pretty.

Media Whale 

DIY hopefuls increasingly turn to YouTube videos before reading instruction manuals. This Sarasota company creates animated explainer videos for products and services. The short films may not win anyone an Oscar but the graphics will help make sense of frustrating projects.

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Coastal Condo Craze

Waterfront construction suffered a seven-year drought of high-rise development on Siesta Key when the recession crashed early on Florida’s shores. But real estate buyers on the Gulf will soon see more opportunity to join beachfront views with condominium amenities. It started when Crossgate Partners opened the 11-unit Siesta Key Infinity in 2016. This June, the same company broke ground on Océane Siesta Key, a new six-unit development on the island. The four-bedroom, four-and-a-half bathroom residences each come with their own three-car garage and private cabana. “We looked to design a warm, coastal modern building rather than a big white stucco box,” says architect Mark Sultana. And that’s not the only such development he’s designed this year. Another similar condo project will open on the island’s south end by the end of the year, he says. Next, the long anticipated redevelopment of the Colony as the condo craze hits Longboat Key. An ultra-luxury development will bring 78 units online. Michael Saunders & Company will be the exclusive marketing seller, and real estate agent Michael Moulton, whose wife Katie Klauber Moulton once ran the Colony, says the project looks promising. “I am very enthused by the preliminary plans that I have seen and personally discussed with the developer, and truly believe The Residences will be the finest luxury residential opportunity on Longboat Key,” he says.— J.Ogles

Play Bowl

After 50 years of Tervis workers creating perfect tumblers, the Venice company now wants to take over the entire kitchen table. Enter bowls. Yes, Tervis just released its first line of dishes with signature insulation to keep your cereal milk cool and your chicken soup warm. “It’s our first entry into a new form beyond drinkware,” says Tervis CEO Rogan Donelly. He says the leap from the cupboard to the cabinet was driven by consumer demand. Now, you can get the bowls in a variety of colors. The logos and wrap designs that make Tervis’ tumblers look as cool as the beer inside have yet to find their way into the bowl linings, but, as the product line grows, so do the possibilities.— J.Ogles


Who Owns the Beach?

You can’t say Gulf Coast residents aren’t serious about their sunsets. The chance to stand on the beach and watch that fiery globe in the sky sink below the horizon drew many a resident to Sarasota in the first place, so access to the coast has been a contentious issue as more private entities cordon off the shore.  Mike Cosentino, a Siesta Key resident, took the county to court this year over a plan to vacate Beach Road, a 400-yard path offering access, so that only the Sunset Point Owners Association could use it. Then there’s the controversial plan by the City of Sarasota and the Army Corps of Engineers to take 1.3 million cubic yards of sand from Big Pass to renourish Lido Beach. While that plan got approval from an administrative judge in June, that too has drawn threats of litigation from Big Pass lovers angry at one beach being compromised to help another. And then there’s a much-derided new law that seems to supersede local ordinances protecting public access to all beaches. Scott, who signed the law in April, said lawmakers did not realize the bill could allow private landowners to block off parts of beach now open to all. A month after signing the bill, the governor ordered state agencies not to enforce it, prompting political debate this fall and assuring legal wrangling in the next legislative session.—J.Ogles


Sail Without Fail

Anchor your fears and take the helm for an invigorating journey in learning to sail. For those with sea legs and a thirst for bay breezes (not the cocktail sorry), jump on a Sunfish sailboat—a personal-sized, beach-launched dinghy. It’s never too late to add a new hobby to your resume, no matter what age of adulthood. Sarasota Sailing Squadron hosts a female-powered club dubbed Luffing Lassies. At the end of every summer, they invite new sailors to enroll in the Introduction to Sailing program, a full week of instruction and coaching by veterans, to skipper a boat on your own and make your way around a racecourse with dozens of other sailing women. Then every Thursday, the Lassies meet to sail and race throughout the season until May. No previous experience is required at Sara Bay Longboat Sailing either—buoyant hedonist Captain Bill Brooker, wants you to bring a keen enthusiasm and appreciation for the ocean, with a dream to finally get that sailor knot down to a T. The school is an affiliate of the American Sailing Association (ASA), meaning your certificate at the end of your schooling will be a legitimate license to traverse the seven seas. Personalized courses are taught by experienced and certified ASA instructors, taking place in the superb cruising grounds of Sarasota Bay and offshore in the Gulf of Mexico. Join spirited Captain Bill and the Sara Bay crew aboard a Capri 22, a Catalina 22 and a Nightwind 35 and add navigating the tides and chartering a floating vessel onto your resume. Ahoy matey! —B. Mattie Sarasota Sailing Squadron, 1717 Ken Thompson Pkwy., Sarasota. Sara Bay Sailing School, 4134 Gulf of Mexico Dr., Longboat Key.


Raising the Bar

Out with the old and in with the new, a handful of local drinkeries are upgrading their digs for larger/more modern facilities. Exciting changes have taken place over the past year, such as Growlers Pub’s full renovation and redesign from its grungy aesthetic to now a hip, inviting and updated hangout, while still offering dozens of craft beer on tap, open mic night and trivia. And the location formerly known as Z-baron Main Street is getting a complete facelift. Jacob, Curtis and Billy Brewster, three brothers and all owners take on the transient lot, now Brewsters Tavern and furnishing an entire wall of draft beer, handcrafted woodwork tables and an industrial, hipster feel. Seemingly here to stay, Jacob shares, “With all of the new development going on downtown, we want this to be everyone’s casual contemporary bar. Back in the 20s, the building was built with brick and marble and we wanted to accentuate that in the design. We’re adding a brand new cement bar top, exposing some brick and reclaimed wood walls, a new tap system and cooler for craft beers, along with pool tables and dartboards. Our menu will include numerous build-your-own options so you can choose to eat healthy or embrace a cheat day.” The brewing brothers are looking forward to Brewster’s becoming the spot where you can just stop to have a quick drink and bite, but also where you can hang out and dance on a Friday night. Left Coast Seafood Bar closed temporarily for a month to update the look, and owner Mariel dropped a teaser of some of the surprises to look forward to its reopening September 4: “I wanted to give off more of a coastal feel—we’ve added some wood planking, brightened up the paint colors, and have some fun new art pieces coming in!” Restaurants like Darwin Evolutionary Cuisine and JPAN saw too, the necessity of a swanky bar scene to indulge in adult bevs and a PG-13 (21) ambiance. Both underwent construction this year, adding supplementary bars as an extension of their dining rooms. The expansion of JPAN centers around a custom-designed showcase bar, inspired by the owner’s international travels. Socially vibrant seating has been added, as well as an outdoor lounge, providing both communal and intimate imbibing experiences. And as for Libby’s Cafe + Bar well, let’s just say you might not recognize the place once it’s received its glamorous makeover—now underway, and set to be entirely remodeled by end of November. Expect a reconfigured layout, completely new menu and an eclectic, modern beachy vibe—B. Mattie  Growlers, 2831 North Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Brewsters, 1454 Main St., Sarasota. Left Coast Seafood Co., 385 U.S. 41 Bypass, Venice. JPAN, 229 N. Cattleman Road, Sarasota. Libby’s, 1917 South Osprey Ave., Sarasota.

 JPAN's Renovated Bar at their University Town Center location.

Abandon Chip

No need actually. There’s a wave of substitutes that are taking front-aisle precedent on the shelves of local grocery stores. In the craze to find gut-friendly alternatives for our favorite junk food snacks that still satisfy the salt taste buds, take note how easy it’s become to shy away from Lay’s and Pringles potato chips. Avoiding the oppressive number of sodium mg, artificial flavors/additives and deep-fried process, pop a bag of Old Florida Sweet Perfection sweet potato tortilla chips, manufactured locally in Stuart—these can be found at Lucky’s Market on the brown-labeled “Local” shelf, as well as dehydrated Cheezy Kale chips made by Siesta Key’s Nutritious You, a vegan, organic, gluten-free shop. At Gulf Gate’s natural food grocer Sprouts Farmers Market, opt for its own line of organic desiccated coconut chips. Also gloating an attractive nutrition label with fewer calories, no trans fat and cleaner ingredients, try snap pea crisps, baked plantains and root vegetable chips with varieties of beet, turnip, parsnip, taro, tapioca and carrot. These healthful versions are thinly sliced, lightly tossed using “heart-healthy” oils such as virgin olive, sunflower, sesame or coconut, and then oven-baked at high temps to create that same savory crunch you crave—sans the spike in cholesterol and guilt of munchies. —B. Mattie

The Last Straw

You’ve likely heard buzz surrounding the great straw epidemic—more than 500 million plastic straws are used everyday in the United States, and, once deposited into the ocean, do not biodegrade and are often ingested by marine life. Thankfully, for the sake of our planet and fishy friends, environmental consciousness, minimalism and sustainability are culminating in prevalence and awareness. Corporations such as Starbucks have given their undivided attention and are taking a stand against the detrimental plastic tubes, with the intention to be completely strawless by the year 2020, substituting “adult sippy cups” as the alternative, and reusable straws for consumers who wish to use them. To initiate local change, Cat Dillard and Jane Hoefling, co-founders of Rethinking Plastics Sarasota, a grassroots environmentalist group, have joined hands to start an initiative called Skip the Straw Suncoast. The initiative asks local restaurants to gradually get rid of plastic straws altogether, and rather opt for alternatives fabricated from paper, cardboard and hay materials. “We want to stress that we are trying to be supportive of sustainable practices,” says Dillard. “We are not here to shame restaurants for using plastics.” Skip the Straw is not suggesting the production of compostable or biodegradable materials either, because Sarasota simply does not have the facility available to break them down, which would leave the efforts virtually useless. “We already have over 30 restaurants on board,” Dillard shares. Popular bars and eateries such as Indigenous, 1812 Osprey, Made, Louies Modern, Gecko’s, Jack Dusty, Seafood Shack, Dry Dock Grill, Blu Kouzina and Kacey’s Seafood are making moves and have pledged to skip single-use plastic straws. “We’d ideally like to have 100 by next year,” Dillard says. “We’d also love to bring our message nationally and join hands with other like-minded entities.” —J.Glover

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Third-Wave Coffee

To say that coffee has evolved into a daily, quintessential element of modern culture
and society would be an understatement. From the first wave of Folgers Classic Roast, to the second wave flavored latte movement with corporations such as Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts; we’ve now transitioned to the third wave: consideration of coffee as a high-quality art rather than simply for its caffeinated practicality. Up until recent years, the everyday individual took his or her cup of joe with simple cream and sugar, but now there are so many exceptions and variations. Java lovers are incorporating off-kilter ingredients generally found in a separate food pyramid category. What was once originally a caffeinated morning beverage of hot bean water to get people through the day, has transitioned into a more versatile snack or decadent treat. In 2018, the world of fruits and vegetables—like acai berries and beets—can coexist and even collide with the world of cold brew and espresso. Branch out with the bean and try some coffee-infused creations available below.  J.Glover

Vitality Bowls

Superfood Mocha- espresso, CaCoCo, Superfood Chocolate Blend, Coconut Sugar, Steamed Milk. Acai Latte- espresso, acai, coconut sugar, steamed almond milk. Pitaya latte- espresso, pitaya, coconut sugar, steamed coconut milk

Clean Juice

The Beauty Bowl- organic cold brew coffee, activated charcoal, organic almond butter, organic almond milk, organic banana, organic cacao, organic cacao nibs, organic granola, organic maple syrup, organic vanilla. The Coffee One Smoothie- cold brew coffee, organic dates, organic almond butter, organic almond milk, organic banana. Cashew Milk Latte- cold brew, cashews, vanilla, cinnamon, maple syrup, himalayan pink sea salt

Buddy Brew

Cold Brew Floats- served with vanilla gelato, caramel syrup and its specialty, organic cold brew on tap, either Original or on Nitro.

Big Top Brewery 

Hawaiian Lion Porter- proprietary blend of local Java Dog coffee, roasted the moment before going into the brew to maintain the bean’s bold flavor. This custom coffee blend is then paired with over 150 pounds of fresh coconut to create a roaring aroma with a rich
and smooth beer.

Embracing the Arts

When worlds collide and star-crossed lovers
find their way to each other, magic happens. Art appears to be having affairs with relationships outside her industry bubble and engaging in partnerships with hotels, cafes, concerts, yoga and restaurants. Stimulate the left-brain whilst dining, shopping, checking in to your room or getting your namaste on. At 530 Burns Gallery, chair yoga classes are hosted while an artist paints close-by in a meditative collab, and at Cafe Barbosso, rotating artists paint anything from realism to abstract on large canvases, live during dinner hour. Take in local artists’ paintings displayed on Kahwa’s walls as you lounge on the couch sipping your chai latte. All artwork is for sale and exudes a homey, artful feel to the cafe. Art Ovation Hotel brings an unparalleled artistic element to the equation and looks to turn conventional hospitality on its head with a staggering array of arts opportunities and activities that will make even locals want to staycation there. “We’re experimenting,” says Lisa DiFranza, Cultural Curator for Art Ovation Hotel. “In season, we’ll have even more surprises.” In addition to rotating exhibits on the hotel’s ground floor, art and wine tours, portrait workshops with an artist’s studio constructed off the lobby, catch up with artists-in-residence like Mark Gagnon, a Bradenton-based painter and sculptor, who recently had a stint working live in the lobby during happy hour. And for the weekend early-risers, head up for Art and Yoga on the roof, where a local yoga instructor uses local art to inspire exercises for the day. Admiring art isn’t just for galleries, museums and hanging your child’s 6th period project on the fridge anymore—she’s evolving into an engaging application of expression throughout our community in the most unorthodox places.  B.Mattie

Rx 420

It’s been more than 40 years since reggae star Peter Tosh proclaimed “Don’t criticize it/ Legalize it” and extolled how ganja was “good for tuberculosis, even numara thrombosis.” Florida voters took to the message—plus subsequent decades of research and study—and voted in 2016 in favor of a constitutional amendment decriminalizing marijuana when used as a pharmaceutical. While it will take a doctor’s prescription and not just an island beat to pick up an order of medical cannabis, Florida patients can now get dosages of extract shipped to their homes or they can go to surprisingly posh dispensaries to get the good stuff directly from the experts. Sarasota-based Altmed, which launched four years ago and waited out the establishment of new regulations and county zoning, opened its first hometown retail shop in August. Spokesman Todd Beckwith happily talked up the high-tech vaporizers and high-grade product grown indoors at a Plants of Ruskin farm in Apollo Beach. “We have the premier genetics and cultivation program in the state,” he says. And if a pending-at-presstime court case allows for smokable marijuana to hit the market in the Sunshine State, Beckwith says the company will be ready to sell burnables too. Meanwhile, Trulieve continues to open dispensaries throughout Florida, including a spot in Bradenton, and Surterra Therapeutics provides for the North Port audience. —J.Ogles RX 420- Altmed’s MÜV Dispensary, 1451 Global Ct., Sarasota.


Sunshine Detox

Dog days of burning season may be behind us, but the Floridian sun is still upon us. When your skin needs a deep transformation and rejuvenation from the harsh UV rays, The Skin & Body Bar incorporates advanced modalities—providing non-invasive services such as Radiance Facials, Collagen Induction Therapy, Dermaplanning and NeoPeels. These stimulate natural healing responses to help with anti-aging, create smoother skin, reduce fine lines/wrinkles and correct acne scars and hyperpigmentation marks. Owner, licensed esthetician and massage therapist, Ileana Mann divulges, “I use mainly holistic and natural skincare products. Our facials are jam-packed with lots of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and plant stem cells that help maintain youthful skin as well as preventing damage. Our SPFs are mineral-based with zinc and titanium dioxide, so they are good for the planet as well as our body’s ecosystem. All facials are tailored to the clients specific needs/concerns, so we look at the full picture—stress levels, diet, environment, lifestyle and activity level to get to the route of the issue. In addition we now have teas and tinctures that help balance the skin’s pH and body with powerful herbs and blends, to help heal and give that glow from the inside out.” Find further restoration at Élan Skin Luxury Spa for a HydraFacial MD—deeply cleansing and exfoliating the skin, infusing hydrating serums and perking up damaged skin—while destinations like L.Spa stock brightened foyers with top-of-the-line skin care products like Colorescience Sunforgettable line with health-forward formulas and shields of 30-50 SPF, bestowing a revival of radiance and daily UV protection. Properly combat your eternal love/hate relationship with Mr. Sun; because taking care of your skin is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity.  B.Mattie  The Skin & Body Bar, 3932 Swift Rd. suite A, Sarasota. Élan Skin Luxury Spa, 1806 South Osprey Ave., Sarasota. L.Spa, 556 South Pineapple Ave., Sarasota. 


What’s the Scoop

Off-the-wall flavors are rising in popularity and presence. In Bradenton, Joe’s Eats and Sweets offers an assortment of odd flavors, including Cotton Candy (with mixed-in Nerds candy), Milk and Cereal, and a fruity-flavored ice cream with Captain Crunch berry, Honey Lavender and Green Tea. “Some people come in and they’re like, ‘Oh, I’ve never seen that before.’ And they want to try it,” manager Crystal says of the quirky concoctions. “It’s about 50/50, they either love it or they hate it.” Travel south to Made in Rome for the recently debuted and ever-so-peculiar concoction, Activated Charcoal. Beware, it may leave you with an obsidian=stained tongue! Indulge in a Snickers, Pumpkin Pie or Root Beer ice cream at the aptly-named Holy Cow Ice Cream on Anna Maria Island, or venture out to Siesta Key and taste-test Orange Octopus’s Kentucky Honey Bourbon, made with Evan Williams bourbon, pecan praline and clover honey. Further down the coast, Venice Avenue Creamery churns up flavors like the all-American Apple Pie and Peeps—a Halloween-themed marshmallow ice cream made with, you guessed it, Peeps. If these flavors tell us anything, it’s finally cool to be weird.   C.Manz  Joe’s Eats and Sweets, 219 Gulf Dr. South, Bradenton Beach. Made in Rome, 5204 Ocean Blvd, Siesta Key. Holy Cow Ice Cream and Other Cool Stuff, 3234 East Bay Dr., Holmes Beach. Orange Octopus Ice Cream Co., 1220 Old Stickney Point Rd., Sarasota. Venice Avenue Creamery, 249 West Venice Ave., Venice.